Aside Posted on Updated on
I travel by tram sometimes to the outskirts of the city for rehearsals with a pianist, more so of late as I prepare to make some new recordings. This journey takes me through parts of the city I would never otherwise go through. Yesterday on the way home a set of sculptures caught my eye in a children’s park so I dismounted the rickety tram with doors that close too loudly and always leave my ears buzzing, and dashed into the park to capture some images of these white stone animals, artifacts of the former communist era.
I’m mesmerised by the elephant, his stylised lines and ebony body shaped with a certain grace and symettry that reminds of Babar except I think I was the only child who found Babar to be graceful so to speak- I guess cos I knew he was French.
I try to find the sculptor and the dates the animals were made, by way of an obituary. My small attempt to prevent artists from sinking into the abyss, out of social consciousness. Date and name. It says an individual lived. There was a person, behind the image, who existed…who caught trams, walked on foot or rode their bicycle just like you and I.
But I find no name or plaque. I don’t even know the name of the park. When a name is lost or forgotten, the individual loses their status. Despite the absence of a name however, the objects of their productivity still remain. Which leads me to my next point. Art is not in the name, or creator, maybe so much as in that which is created and how it is received or interpreted.
To date I can boast no noble artistic status. I’ve not sung in the concert halls of my dreams, nor on the stages to be envied and frequented by opera lovers. At times, as good as I can get might be singing an aria to an open window with a summer view. And yet, I create, I fight to create.
It’s easy as an anonymous unestablished artist to grieve at the tomb of unfulfilled dreams- mourning that your art is not even received to your knowledge. You arrange concerts, that maybe even friends won’t bother to attend, let alone the public. You sing daily, you work tirelessly and in the current climate with the current conditions in the arts maybe no one will ever hear you as much as you hope. In some way though, you create your own anonymous animal menagerie, not because you want to, not because you are vain, but because you simply must. For without your creations, you cease to exist.
Music is breath- violinist, Ivry Gitlis